The idea of rejuvenating plastic surgery can be both exciting and a little intimidating. Significant improvement can occur from a procedure such as a facelift. This is the light at the end of the tunnel. What patients like to know is how long and dark that tunnel will be. Here, we discuss what most people encounter after their facelift. Knowing the general aspects of recovery may give you the peace of mind you need to take steps toward the facial rejuvenation you want.
What to Expect after a Facelift
Facelift surgery involves small incisions in the area of the ears. Using small instruments, the surgeon repositions the deeper tissue beneath the skin and secures it higher on the cheek. Excess skin is trimmed to smooth the superficial signs of aging.
Clearly, a facelift involves muscle and fat manipulation and tissue excision. As a result, patients should expect some swelling. Bruising can also occur but sometimes this is much less than a person would expect. Swelling is typically the most noticeable effect, and this can be managed by sleeping on two pillows or in a recliner during the first week of recovery. Cold compresses or ice packs can also be applied for short periods to reduce swelling.
The discomfort of a facelift is minimal and very manageable. Initially, patients may take prescription pain medication before transitioning to an over-the-counter pain reliever. The disruption to superficial nerves can lead to temporary numbness. This disappears as nerves and vessels regenerate in their new location on the face.
Supporting a Stress-Free Recovery
Aside from following post-operative instructions and attending all post-op office visits, our strongest recommendation for facelift patients is to take time to rest. Regardless of how quickly comfort improves, it is important to remember that the majority of the body’s energy needs to be reserved for tissue recovery. It is acceptable to take short walks as soon as you feel able. However, keep the pace slow and postpone any ideas of working out until cleared by your surgical team. Also, sunscreen is a must anytime you go outdoors. UV exposure could increase the risk of visible scarring.
Learn more about facelift surgery and how our techniques achieve outstanding results. Call our Bloomington, IL office at (309) 664-1007.